Meaning of donko in English:


Pronunciation /ˈdɒŋkəʊ/

nounplural noun donkos

informal New Zealand
  • A room in a workplace where employees spend breaks.

    • ‘there'd be after-work drinks in the donko’
    • ‘Government photographers also ventured from the factory into the staff cafeteria, the tea-room, or the 'donko' to record workers at rest.’
    • ‘He sits in the donko beside the rotary milking shed on the 235-hectare family farm.’
    • ‘It’s equally clear you don’t visit construction site donkos.’
    • ‘In the woolstores, smoko was held in the donko.’
    • ‘They'd had a really neat donko for smoko where he could really put his feet up.’
    • ‘Silence settled, with the smell of the pots, over the donko.’
    • ‘The men drifting from the donko wove the final hymn through the thud of the works machine.’
    • ‘The donko was silent, a silence punctuated by the slap of cards, the scrape of matches and the clatter of enamel mugs.’


1970s possibly an abbreviation of slang donkey room, a room housing a donkey engine at the Wellington wharves, where workers would shelter in inclement weather.